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Studying for your Phd

The Dance department has gained an international reputation in PhD studies through Practice as Research, and actively encourage applicants in this area of research practice.

Dance is part of a lively research culture which includes visiting artists contributing to regular research presentations, performances, installations and exhibitions and an ongoing Research Dialogues series.

There are reading groups and opportunities to develop through paper and performance presentations.

We encourage enquiries from potential applicants in Dance and Dance-related subjects in both traditional academic and practice-based research. Opportunities for interdisciplinary research are also available.

Supervision is offered by a strong, research-active team with a wide range of expertise, and includes academics and practitioner-scholars with international reputations.

The Dance and Theatre team offer research supervision in the following subject categories:

Name Status Field of Study
Dr Ben Francombe BA (Hons), PhD Solo performance, twentieth-century Irish theatre, post-colonial British theatre, politics of the British theatre system.
Ian Homsby BA (Hons), MPhil Critical theory and its relation to art, philosophy and politics. Investigation of 'praxis' in relation to a dialogue between artistic practice and critical theory.
Dr Rod Paton BA (Hons), PGCE, DPhil Improvisation and jazz composition, music therapy, music and archetypal psychology.
Dr Jonathan Little B.Mus (Hons),Th.A., Ph Instrumental and vocal compositions, orchestration in 19th and 20th century Music.
Professor Jane Bacon BA,MA PhD Dance and somatic practices, movement and Jungian psychology, Authentic Movement, Practice as Research.
Dr Brian Lobel BA, MA, PhD One to one performance, health and body politics, writing for performance.
Dr Yael Flexer BA, MA, PhD Postmodern choreography, dance analysis.
Dr Vicky Hunter BA, MA, PhD Site specific choreography, place and embodiment, dance and new materialism.
Dr Laura Ritchie BA, MA, PhD The musical self and its perception, self-efficacy beliefs in musical learning and performing.
Dr Andrew Wilford BA, MA, PhD Performance and politics, contemporary performance and philosophy.
Dr Shirley Chubb BA, MA, PhD Fine Art, walking practices and photography, practice-as-research in Fine Art.
Dr Andrea Davidson MA, DEA, PhD Dance and New Media, Practice as Research.
Dr Clare Parfitt BA (Hons), MA, PhD Dance history (esp 19th C. popular dance forms), cultural approaches to dance, popular dance, history of dance on screen, dance in relation to modernism and postmodernism.
Dr Ann Nugent MA, PhD  Dance criticism & analysis, European Dance Theatre.
Dr Marisa Zanotti BA, MA, PhD Choreography and film making, adaptation of choreography to the screen.


Dance researchers at the University of Chichester are currently supervising PhD students from Brazil, Japan, Germany and the UK. 


  • Asuka (Aska) Sakuta: the interrelationship between scientific theories of ‘flow’ and improvisation practices
  • Virginia Farman: An investigation into representations of ‘wildness’ in contemporary choreographic practices
  • Jo Blake Cave: Rules of Enchantment: a practical investigation into contemporary story telling practice
  • Amy Voris: Choreographing the Multitudinous Body
  • Andrew Wass: Exploration and Experimentation, The fractal and rhizomatic nature of improvisation
  • Natalie Rowland: Lighting and Lit
  • Celena Monterio: European Dancehall Queen Competitions in the Digital Age: Transcultural Feminine Identity Production in Performance
  • Ashleigh Griffiths: Holding pieces of light: a practical-theoretical inquiry into the memorialization of encounters as objects
  • Claire French: Choreographic Communication and Cognitive Processes
  • Paul Sadot: Dramaturgy, Choreography and breaking conventions in UK Hip Hop Dance Theatre
  • Flaviana Sampaio: Light Never Escapes: Procedures for Dancing in Shadow

Most of these PhD projects are being undertaken using choreography or performance as a central research strategy.

For further information on specific staff available to supervise your project please go to our Staff Profiles 

Contact Us

If you are interested in discussing Postgraduate research opportunities in Dance with us, you will be joining a strong body of PhD students in Dance and Theatre, a thriving PhD student community across the university, and a vibrant research culture which will enhance your research opportunities.

Please contact Dr Clare Parfitt or Professor Jane Bacon